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#222120 - 06/16/10 12:11 PM New (used) dragline and itching to use it.
Duszy Offline


Registered: 06/16/10
Posts: 6
Loc: michigan
Wow, I am so glad I found this site. Hello to all!
Well here's a little history. I have 55 acres and quite a bit of it is wet (high water table). They had dug a 30'x60' hole to get dirt for around my house and to build up my drive (house is 750' from road). It is actually in a good location and I have been able to watch this hole for six years now and and I am now ready to expand it. Recently a friend and I perchased an old bantam dragline crane on a 6 wheel carrier. We have been doing research on building ponds, but I would like to hear from someone who has actually dug ponds with a dragline, and what is the best way to proceed.
I'm sure there may be somthing in the archives as well.
Thanks, and I'm looking forward to utilizing this site.

Duszy

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#222123 - 06/16/10 12:26 PM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: Duszy]
bobad Offline
Lunker

Registered: 06/02/05
Posts: 2365
Loc: Eunice, Louisiana
A dragline sounds good for expanding existing ponds and ideal for cleaning out old ponds.
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#222129 - 06/16/10 12:57 PM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: bobad]
esshup Offline
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Registered: 01/26/09
Posts: 24027
Loc: Grovertown, Indiana
I don't know how good a dragline would be with digging in heavy clayey soils. The previous owner supposedly had someone come in and try to dig the pond deeper with a dragline. Supposedly they could only get down so far before they couldn't dig any deeper. In roughly 1/2 the pond by the end of summer I only had 2'-3' max water depth.

When I renovated the pond, the excavator had a hard time digging thru the clay/gravel mix in certain areas.....

But it sounds like the perfect tool for softer/wetter soils.
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#222142 - 06/16/10 01:30 PM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: Duszy]
Omaha Offline
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Registered: 12/06/08
Posts: 4508
Loc: Nebraska
Not a dirt guy (wish I was, they're a lot of fun), but happy to see you found the New Topic button and hope to see you around a lot more Duszy! Got some expert dirt guys around here though that would love to hear more about what you're doing. Please post pictures of your project. We love pictures!
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#222148 - 06/16/10 01:59 PM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: Omaha]
Duszy Offline


Registered: 06/16/10
Posts: 6
Loc: michigan
Thanks for the welcome and the post's so far. Seems like quite a few people have used them around here in michigan, but I haven't found one yet to pick there brain. Anyway, I have the jist of operating it I am just wondering if there is a good process to go about digging the pond with. I plan on making roughly a 1/2 acre pond with the outline shaped like a number 8, but I'll be happy in the end with anything that will support fish and allow us to cool off in. The water table is high around my place so I figure this will play as a factor too.
TYhanks again.

Duszy

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#222150 - 06/16/10 02:21 PM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: Omaha]
JoeG Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/21/03
Posts: 530
Loc: Cambridge Springs, PA
A dragline is very effective in the hands of someone who knows how to use it, I own one and still don't claim expert status but I have some experience with wet digging and some safety advice for you as well.

The main problem I have encountered with the dragline digging wet or soupy material is that the material you can scoop up will turn to a puddle when you try to stock pile it, often it can run out the cracks of a dump truck tail gate too. This also means it is difficult to move said stock piles with a dozer, loader, etc. Wet material takes time to dry and fact is you can't stock it any further from your machine than you dug it from. This all becomes a problem because you will get better at digging and be able to create messes faster than they will be cleaned up. Often these messes will be right where you need to move to to continue digging, get my drift? I always try load and haul away to some other spot if possible.

My machine is on crawler tracks, so I don't have outriggers, but yours should have outriggers for added stability. Never dig without your outriggers down and make sure you get some cribbing to keep them from sinking in, you should have roughly 5 times the surface area of your outrigger pad of cribbing material under it, think oak not pine. Basic craning logic proves if you swing too fast the load can go out past your boom tip thusly increasing your radius and reducing your rated capacity, exceed this number by enough of a difference and it will pull you over. This can be helped by a steeper boom angle to a point, it can also be made worse if ground conditions under your outrigger are soft and you sink in a little.

Keeping all that in mind I would only ever make a spoil pile if you intend to leave it there, loading the material again later just adds time and cost to your operation. You should avoid swinging over your carrier/truck cab lest you like replacing window glass, this means you have to set up your digging and dumping cycle to work off each side of the machine. You can dig like that in straight lines and make several passes to get to your finished excavation or you can dig in a circle and just keep going around in ever widening circles to reach your goal.

Bottom line is be careful, figure on moving slowly, and always think about your next moves and avoid making piles that will be in your way later.
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#222219 - 06/17/10 06:09 AM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: JoeG]
Duszy Offline


Registered: 06/16/10
Posts: 6
Loc: michigan
JoeG, Great advice, thanks so much. Yes the carrier has out riggers, but I didn't realize there should be more support under the pads. With your advice I am going to construct something. Iv'e thought myself about what you said about the dug soil piled up and getting in the way of future digging, and I have been contiplating on getting a dump truck now I think it is a must have Item. I have plenty of room on the property for the spoils, and in the end I would like to creat a birm around one side of the pond (neighbors and road).
Thanks again for the advice and I will take the safety issues to heart.

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#222223 - 06/17/10 07:24 AM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: Duszy]
JoeG Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/21/03
Posts: 530
Loc: Cambridge Springs, PA
I'm a little over cautious on the safety but I have seen pictures of several of these truck mounted units on their sides. I operate cranes a good deal of the time and it is one easy machine to forget how fast bad things can happen. As far as the cribbing, you can get by with some 4' long pieces of rough cut 2x8 or 2x10 oak. If you want to get fancy make some cable loops on them so you can suck them out of the mud and even move them with the crane itself.

One last thing I forgot to mention, proper digging with the drag bucket also involves not dragging all the material to the machine if you can help it, once the bucket is full get it up in the air rather than drag more material to your "feet" so to speak, this way you don't have a pile of material drawn tight to you that you can't remove without moving the rig. You will have fun, you will work hard, and you will save money digging yourself.

Every man should own a dump truck.....heh heh.
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The world contains a finite amount of facts, but there are infinite ways to put them to use.

Be a fountain in life, not a drain....

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#222265 - 06/17/10 11:17 AM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: JoeG]
Duszy Offline


Registered: 06/16/10
Posts: 6
Loc: michigan
Is it nessary even with a dragline to pump the pond while digging? This somthing I hadn't planned on, I was thinking with a dragline I could continue to dig even where water exsits.
Thanks

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#222417 - 06/18/10 08:00 AM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: Duszy]
JoeG Offline
Lunker

Registered: 08/21/03
Posts: 530
Loc: Cambridge Springs, PA
Yes you can dig in water, this is exactly why you don't want to try to stock pile this material it will be soaking wet and take time to dry, and it will not be moveable for a while if you make piles of it.
_________________________
The world contains a finite amount of facts, but there are infinite ways to put them to use.

Be a fountain in life, not a drain....

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#222784 - 06/20/10 08:04 PM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: Duszy]
bryani289swmi Offline
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker

Registered: 11/18/08
Posts: 161
Loc: SW Michigan
Duszy,

I'm finally just gettiing started on my project in Michigan as well, just bought my second dragline and a dozer. For digging in water use a perforated bucket to let the H2O run off, I might have a line on a couple buckets if you are interested. Shoot me a PM if interested. Good luck.

Bryan

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#222977 - 06/21/10 07:58 PM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: Duszy]
DustyMT Offline


Registered: 06/21/10
Posts: 1
Loc: Butte, MT
Hi Duszy. Been in the dirt business for over 35 years. Draglines are my favorite machine. If there is any specific questions I can help you with, please don't hesitate to ask. At any rate, no, it is not necessary to drain anything to work with a dragline. The bucket has holes in it for the liquid to drain off. As you drag the bucket to you, the material you are dredging up pushes 90% of the water out of the bucket and balance is drained when you raise it up. The size of the holes in the bucket vary. The small hole buckets are used in very light muddy areas. Bigger holes are used in heavy clay soil, etc where the material itself won't go out in the holes. So it depends on what type of material you have there. There are several tricks to the trade for sure including how you string your hoist rope and drag rope on your drums in order to get them to last a long time......and......how you use the drag rope to make it last 1000 hours plus, etc. Lots of little tricks. But draglines are by far the nicest machines still today. They will outperform excavators in terms of reach, cycle times and yardage. Anyway, if there is anything I can help you with let me know. We just sold our Manitowoc 4600, a 35B. We also had a linkbelt 88, 98 and 108 all of which were draglines. Take care.

Dusty
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Dusty in Montana

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#223023 - 06/22/10 06:54 AM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: DustyMT]
Duszy Offline


Registered: 06/16/10
Posts: 6
Loc: michigan
Dusty, Thanks for the post! Time is tight right now and I havent used it yet. I have been doing some work on it tune up, lube ect. I am on vacation next week and plan on starting. I currently have a 30'x60' hole/pond that I am going to make deeper this year. It has gills in it already so I hoping they will servive the dig and winter better. when I start digging the rest I hoping I can attach to this smaller portion and the fish will servive. What do you recomend I do with the spoils. The ground is a sandy loam, should I pile it and let it drain then move it later? One side of the pond will be facing the neighbors and road(they are both atleast a 1000' away though) and I would like to have slight mounds on that side of the pond to make it feel more secluded. I'm hoping to end up with a 1/2 acre kidney or figure eight shaped pond.
Once I get started I'm sure I'll have operating questions and it is nice to know your willing to answer my questions. By the way the dragline is a Batam 35' boom on a 6x6 carrier. The guy we bought it from had all the manuals which makes it nice. We already replaced all the cables, so any advice you can give to make them last would be greatly appreciated. Anyway thats enough rambling for now.
Thanks again,

Duszy

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#245318 - 01/18/11 10:30 PM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: Duszy]
65Starfire Offline


Registered: 01/18/11
Posts: 7
Loc: Colrado
The truck crane would not be my tool of choice, but you make do with what you have. Just as boxing is largely all about foot work, running a dragline with best results is all about positioning the machine correctly. You can get around this with the assistance of a small dozer if the pond bottom WILL SUPPORT IT AND AFFORD TRACTION, but does not sound like it… Dozers do not push material up hill very efficiently any way, so the dragline, tuck mounted or otherwise is a big plus to that end. The idea here is that the dozer can feed material within range of your truck-bound digger. If you can not run a dozer in the pond bottom, you will still find it useful for leveling work pads for the crane. Pushing away wet material will help keep work areas orderly. Drying is helped greatly by spreading the material out to increase surface area that is exposed to the wind and sun. Allow wet piles or "mud pies" to sit tall for at least a day to allow gravimetric water to run out of them before spreading or loading. If you can pump the water out, DO IT even if you can not get a tractor in there! Working blind is tedious, working the material around in the water makes it increasingly sloppy and hard to retain in the bucket, and wastes fuel by moving around a bunch of water instead of dirt. Running your drag cable in the slop is not good as your machine will get filled with it. You will see! In a small machine like yours the bucket is likely to stall in heavy clay. DO control depth with your hoist and make even slices. Lowering the position of the drag chains on your bucket if posible can help control “bighting in”. On a mechanical control machine, read the manual on how to increase tension on the compensation springs to increase line pull on the drag and hoist clutches if they are weak. Be careful working on mats! They can become slick and you can pull yourself into the drink. Swing easy so as not to slip off the mats if you are using them and so as not to fold that boom which is likely 900 years old. Be safe, take your time, have fun, and don't get killed as draglines really dangerous! Also, try to keep your material and equipment FAR away from any trees you might have or you will end up in the dead tree removal business. Go to HCEA.NET for questions about your old digger. You might get a few good answers along with a pile of know-it all responses like mine. LOL...

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#245428 - 01/20/11 04:18 AM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: 65Starfire]
Dave Davidson1 Offline
Moderator
Lunker

Registered: 01/04/06
Posts: 13424
Loc: Hurst & Bowie, Texas
Lots of answers here to questions I've never known enough to ask. Thanks for the input.
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#245532 - 01/21/11 10:40 AM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: JoeG]
ewest Offline
Moderator
Hall of Fame 2014

Lunker

Registered: 03/08/05
Posts: 19373
Loc: Miss.
Great info so far. Thanks guys.

One other suggestion before you start. Get your soil and water tested and dig a couple of test hole so you know what to expect at depth ,that way you know what you have to work with. For example if its bog like conditions/vegetation the area may be too acidic to support fish without lime.
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#246192 - 01/26/11 08:20 PM Re: New (used) dragline and itching to use it. [Re: Duszy]
bryani289swmi Offline
Ambassador
Field Correspondent
Lunker

Registered: 11/18/08
Posts: 161
Loc: SW Michigan
Duszy,

Another site to try for general information on your machine and to find parts if necessary is listed below. There is a non-caterpillar section as well. Good luck.

Bryan

http://www.antiquecaterpillar.net

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